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Interventional Radiology at UPMC in Central Pa.

UPMC in Central Pa. provides interventional radiology services including surgical tumor intervention, catheter and line placement, angiography and needle biopsies.

What is interventional radiology?

Interventional radiologists are involved in both the treatment and diagnosis of disease. They treat a range of conditions by inserting various small instruments, such as catheters or wires, along with the guidance of various imaging techniques (CT scanners, MRI scanners, ultrasound scanners). Interventional radiology offers an alternative to the surgical treatment of many conditions and can eliminate the need for hospitalization, in some cases.

Interventional radiologists perform a variety of procedures, including the following:

  • Angiography - an X-ray of the arteries and veins to detect blockage or narrowing of the vessels. In many cases, the interventional radiologist can treat the blockages, such as those occurring in the arteries in the legs or kidneys, by inserting a small stent which inflates and opens the vessel. This procedure is called a balloon angioplasty.
  • Angioplasty - the use of a small balloon on the tip of a catheter inserted into a blood vessel to open up an area of blockage inside the vessel.
  • Embolization - the insertion of a substance through a catheter into a blood vessel to stop hemorrhaging, or excessive bleeding.
  • Gastrostomy Tubes - a gastrostomy tube (feeding tube) is inserted into the stomach if the patient is unable to take food by mouth.
  • Intravascular Ultrasound - the use of ultrasound inside a blood vessel to better visualize the interior of the vessel in order to detect problems inside the blood vessel.
  • Stent Placement - a tiny, expandable coil, called a stent, is placed inside a blood vessel at the site of a blockage. The stent is expanded to open up the blockage.
  • Foreign Body Extraction - the use of a catheter inserted into a blood vessel to retrieve a foreign body in the vessel.
  • Needle Biopsy - a small needle is inserted into the abnormal area in almost any part of the body, guided by imaging techniques, to obtain a tissue biopsy. This type of biopsy can provide a diagnosis without surgical intervention. An example of this procedure is called the needle breast biopsy.
  • Blood Clot Filters - a small filter is inserted into a blood clot to catch and break up blood clots.
  • Injection of Clot-lysing Agents - clot-lysing agents, such as tissue plasminogen activator (TPA), are injected into the body to dissolve blood clots, thereby increasing blood flow to the heart or brain.
  • Catheters Insertions - a catheter is inserted into large veins for giving chemotherapy drugs, nutritional support, and hemodialysis. A catheter may also be inserted prior to bone-marrow transplantation
  • Cancer Treatment - administering cancer medications directly to the tumor site.

If your doctor requires you to have an interventional radiology procedure, you have the option of having it done by our experienced and expert interventional radiology team at either the UPMC Harrisburg or UPMC Community Osteopathic Campus.

Scheduling: 717-782-3615 or toll-free 1-866-748-2447.

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